By MIKE CHAIKEN
Three new competitors for Miss Connecticut and three new competitors for Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen were selected Saturday night at John F. Kennedy Middle School in Plantsville.
By the end of the night, two sisters had won Miss crowns. Taylor Lemme was selected as Miss Southington and Victoria Lemme is the new Miss Nutmeg.
The pair most recently competed against each other for the state crown this past summer when Taylor Lemme was Miss Greater Watertown and Victoria Lemme was Miss Bristol.
This year, they square off again. They are now both members of the Miss Nutmeg Southington Organization, which means they will make appearances together throughout the community.
Taylor Lemme said that even though both sisters have the same end goal, there is no rivalry between the siblings.
“We’re really not competitors, we’re sisters and we love each other to no end,” said Taylor Lemme. “We get to experience this journey together and that’s the best part.”
Natascia Simone also received a Miss title Saturday, having been crowned as Miss Mountain Laurel. “I’m so excited right now I just won… and I’m heading to Miss Connecticut in June.”
Two Southington teen won crowns at the event. Miss Southington’s Outstanding Teen is Rielley Coles. Miss Mountain Laurel’s Outstanding Teen is Alyssa Petrone. Emerson Forbes was crowned Miss Nutmeg’s Outstanding Teen.
Following the crownings, the winners stood in front of a crowd of cameras. Smiles still settled in on their face.
“I’m ecstatic,” said Victoria Lemme following her crowning in the early afternoon. (Her sister was crowned in the evening.) “I can’t wait to go back to Miss Connecticut.”
As the year progresses, Victoria Lemme said she was looking forward to “just really embracing myself and who I am and showing the judges.”
“I’m overwhelmed with love and support,” said Taylor Lemme. “I’m so grateful to hold the Miss Southington title.”
As the year moves forward, Taylor Lemme said, she is looking forward to “serving the Southington community and really getting… involved with the community and community service.”
Petrone said, “I’m so excited and so thankful to have an opportunity like this happen again. Last year, I was Miss Greater Watertown’s Outstanding Teen and just being able to go back to Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen stage again is special.”
“I love doing community service and I love being out in my community and being able to be in my own hometown Southington and being able to share who I am with everyone… it’s going to make me so happy and proud of myself,” said Petrone.
“I’m feeling super excited,” said Coles. “I finally get to represent my town with this title.”
“I’m looking forward to going to all of the elementary schools in my town and empowering the young women in the town of Southington,” said Coles, whose platform is “Strong women, strong future.”
Forbes said, “I feel amazing and I can conquer anything.” For the next year, she said she is looking forward to “improvement from where I was last year and what I will become this year.”
Simone said her next year will find her looking forward to going throughout her community with her platform, “Food Allergy Advocacy promoting a Healthy Lifestyle.”
Also competing Saturday for Miss titles were: Amber Ouellette, Jaymie Bianca, and Serena Charbonneau.
Other competitors vying for teen titles were Alexandria Maisto, Sophia Modica, and Maggie Wernicki.